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November 05, 2013


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In addition to tomatoes, several other foods have blood pressure lowering effects. Dark chocolate, soybeans, bananas, baked white potatoes, and sunflower seeds can all lower blood pressure as well.

It seems that the current evidence grade for lycopene in hypertension is C according to NS monograph. There is unclear and conflicting evidence, hence why this study was probably conducted. Looking into the study more, lycopene seemed to only affect systolic and not diastolic pressure. I'd be curious to see future studies on this product for possible adjunct use for patient with high blood pressure.

Perhaps there is a deficiency which has yet to be identified, perhaps more prevalent in some populations (environmental or genetic), which lycopene helps alleviate. This might explain the variation in results from different studies discussed. Eventually, some biomarker will likely be identified which can differentiate those with a deficiency from those without.

Something interesting I read is that sun-dried tomatoes provide the most lycopene, around 45902μg per 100g serving, while cooked tomatoes provide 7298μg per cup. Other foods that are high in lycopene are guavas, watermelon, grapefruit and asparagus. I have also heard that lycopene can reduce cancer risk because of its antioxidant and anti proliferative properties, and has beneficial effects on lipids because it prevents lipid peroxidation. There is even some evidence that >25 mg/day of lycopene has the same effect on LDL as low dose statins!

A person has to consume half a cup of tomato juice (120 mL) in order to receive 12 milligrams of lycopene. Lycopene is well known antioxidant and have benefit in preventing prostate cancer as well.

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